MY DARLING CLEMENTINE
1946, 20th Century Fox, 97 min, USA, Dir: John Ford

John Ford directs one of the most beautiful, melancholic, lyrical Westerns ever made, painting an atmospheric interpretation of Wyatt Earp (Henry Fonda), the Earp siblings (Ward Bond, Tim Holt), Doc Holliday (Victor Mature) and their escalating feud with the cattle-rustling Clanton family (Walter Brennan, John Ireland and Grant Withers). Although Ford hews closer to the legend than to the cold hard facts (especially with the fictionalized female characters, Cathy Downs as Clementine and Linda Darnell as Chihuahua), that is, in large part, the point of the film - an elegiac vision of a heroic age when almost-mythological personalities walked the earth as real, flesh-and-blood people. Poignant, exhilarating and gorgeous from beginning to end.


NO WAY OUT
1950, 20th Century Fox, 106 min, USA, Dir: Joseph L. Mankiewicz

After a man dies while under the care of new black doctor Luther Brooks (Sidney Poitier in his feature debut), the patient’s racist brother (Richard Widmark) refuses to allow an autopsy that would prove the physician’s actions were justified. As tensions in the community escalate, Dr. Brooks gets his autopsy the only way he can - by giving himself up for murder. Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee make brief appearances in this tense drama, one of the most blistering critiques of racism ever filmed.


HANGOVER SQUARE
1945, 20th Century Fox, 77 min, USA, Dir: John Brahm

Perhaps the best 1940s thriller that no one has ever seen. Laird Cregar is memorable as a Victorian-era composer beset by blackouts. Is he also a marauding murderer? His passion for luscious singer Linda Darnell inspires betrayal, revenge - and the climactic "Concerto Macabre," one of composer Bernard Herrmann's most thrilling pieces of music.


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